There is a goal that I believe every pastor, and in turn every church, ought to shoot for. Ready for it?
To never have to file another Help-Wanted ad in search of a pastor.
This isn’t to assume that the pastor stays until the church closes its door or Jesus returns. (Although that latter one would be acceptable). This does however mean that the pastor stays long enough that he has trained many men to take his job from him.
Such a goal would take an intentional discipleship and mentoring plan. The pastor and the church would have to intentionally seek young men to train for pastoral ministry. Perhaps rather than shipping them off to seminary to get an education and then pursue pastoral ministry elsewhere the church could develop the young man. That’s not to say that for some churches part of this development wouldn’t be some element of seminary training.
I’m not really saying that it’s wrong for a church to file a help-wanted ad. But I’m dreaming of a day when churches are shepherded in such a way that they become equipped to train up their own pastors.
What do you think? Am I crazy?